We need to talk about and protect our Asian American peers.
It’s time LGBTQ people became more aware of and active in the fight against Asian American hate crimes. Newly released data reveals that hate attacks against Asian Americans rose by nearly 150% in 2020.
This data came from California State University’s Center for the Study of Hate and Extremism, according to Next Shark. The center collected information from 16 of the biggest U.S. cities and found that there were 122 reported anti-Asian American hate crimes last year. Compared to the 49 recorded incidents in 2019, you can understand the concern.
Within the cities, New York City experienced the most reported crimes. In 2019, there were only three reported cases but 2020 saw 28. Then in Philadelphia and Cleveland, 2019 saw two reported cases each. But that number rose to six each in 2020. Meanwhile, San Jose saw four cases in 2019 grow to 10 and Los Angeles’s seven reported cases became 15 last year.
“While most cities experienced overall hate crime declines, including attacks against groups that had recently spiked like Jews, attacks against Asians rose materially in most cities, and only declined in one — Washington, D.C.,” said Brian Levin, executive director of the hate and extremism research center.
This report touches on a growing problem of anti-Asian American hate within America. It’s believed that this rise in hate and violence sprung from frustration over the coronavirus pandemic. In addition, many of the victims of these attacks are non-Chinese Asians.
Stop AAPI Hate, a hate tracker create by several Asian American rights groups, has also been keeping a record of hate attacks in the last year. AAPIT Hate recorded more than 2,800 incidents of racism and discrimination targeting Asian Americans between March and December 2020, according to VOA News.
“These violent assaults have a devastating impact on our community as they are part of an alarming rise in anti-Asian American hate during the COVID-19 pandemic,” STOP AAPI Hate’s co-founders said in a February 9 statement.
We as gay men and LGBTQ people regularly express sentiments of equality and the fight against discrimination and hate-charged violence. Yet, this growing injustice with the United States of America is largely going unreported and unnoticed outside of the Asian American community. It’s time we acknowledge and talk about this issue. If we truly care about equality and the protection of human lives, it’s time we stand by our Asian American peers and neighbors. Stop the violence. Stop the hate.